Ashurst joins flexible lawyering bandwagon as DWF completes BT Law acquisition

Ashurst joins flexible lawyering bandwagon as DWF completes BT Law acquisition

Ashurst has teamed up with US-based law company Elevate and Cognia Law to offer clients flexible lawyering through the firm’s New Law umbrella Ashurst Advance.

The initiative launched today (8 November) and gives Ashurst access to Elevate and Cognia’s flexible lawyering pool, with the offering initially available in both the UK and Australia before being rolled out globally. The arrangement will also allow Ashurst’s clients to access particular expertise for secondees. Continue reading “Ashurst joins flexible lawyering bandwagon as DWF completes BT Law acquisition”

Stake in the ground: Pinsents bolsters alternative services with project management division

Stake in the ground: Pinsents bolsters alternative services with project management division

Pinsent Masons has launched a client and legal project management division as it continues to ramp up investment in non-legal services.

The firm said today [8 October] it had launched the division of more than 20 project managers, led by head of client and legal project management Dee Tamlin (pictured). That team has largely been built up since May last year and won mandates in the UK, Europe and South Africa, with the firm now looking to invest further through recruitment in the UK, Asia-Pacific and Middle East. Continue reading “Stake in the ground: Pinsents bolsters alternative services with project management division”

The Women in Law debate: The challenge of you

The Women in Law debate: The challenge of you

Building on last year’s cover feature on the City’s star female deal counsel, Legal Business teamed up with Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer for a reception celebrating the strides made… and steps still to be taken. The 80 senior lawyers across in-house and private practice that gathered at The Ned in late November heard from a panel of general counsel (GCs) and partners talking frankly about careers, life and changing aspirations.

***

Natasha Good, Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer: I was going to ask our panellists to start by telling us about the challenges they have faced on their career journeys. Continue reading “The Women in Law debate: The challenge of you”

Seven firms land spots on Heathrow’s reduced legal roster

Seven firms land spots on Heathrow’s reduced legal roster

Heathrow Airport has completed an overhaul of its legal panel, with Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer and Allen & Overy among those re-appointed to a reduced roster.

Heathrow has slimmed down its legal panel from nine to seven firms and restructured it from 11 sub-panels to a main general approved list. Pinsent Masons, Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner and Eversheds Sutherland were also awarded spots, alongside City outfit Towerhouse and Thames Valley firm Owen White. Continue reading “Seven firms land spots on Heathrow’s reduced legal roster”

The GC outlook: more for more and more to come

The GC outlook: more for more and more to come

As a long-term observer of the legal profession, I view the development of GCs with an oxymoronic mix of admiration and cynicism. Admiration because common claims about the dramatic improvements in the calibre and size of the talent pool in the in-house profession are that rarest of beasts: a received wisdom that turns out on inspection to be largely true. Cynicism because those strides are often mixed with unwillingness to tackle the ethical and practical implications that come with increased clout.

Neither does much commentary account for the complex, love-hate relationship between GCs and law firms or the powerful impact of the career incentives that in-house counsel face on the development of the legal industry. Continue reading “The GC outlook: more for more and more to come”

Under the influence – how pressure to climb the ladder can corrupt in-house counsel

Under the influence – how pressure to climb the ladder can corrupt in-house counsel

Being risk savvy and commercially aware is the equivalent of ‘leaning in’ for today’s in-house lawyer. Can one do this and retain the mantle of professionalism? Or rather, how can one do that? That is the central concern of our book, In-House Lawyers’ Ethics: Institutional Logics, Legal Risk and the Tournament of Influence. We interviewed dozens of in-house lawyers and surveyed 400, mainly from business but also from government and the third sector, to shed light on the ethical dimensions of in-house practice and risk management. Our central lessons? Organisations matter. Individual lawyers matter. Ideas about the in-house role and professionalism matter. Talking about professionalism and good decision making openly and frankly matters.

The usual academic analysis of in-house lawyers dwells on concerns that in-house counsel are business people first and lawyers a distant second, but we think other questions are more important and useful. In particular, we are interested in how in-house roles and practitioner mindsets about those roles influence their ethical inclination. When we work with in-house teams using the tools in our book, they are often astonished at the different views they and their colleagues have about what in-house lawyers should be like; how they draw on ideas of professionalism; and how to deal with ethical dilemmas. Gordon Gekko can be lurking in the most surprising of places. Continue reading “Under the influence – how pressure to climb the ladder can corrupt in-house counsel”

The Last Word: The clients’ view

The Last Word: The clients’ view

Interviewed for our in-house lawyer survey, some leading general counsel give their views on ethics, law firm engagement and technology

Great expectations

‘There’s no question that stakeholders and the population at large have higher expectations of ethical conduct by companies and that this is only going to increase. Some of that will manifest itself as greater regulation. In-house functions play a greater role in ethical matters. It’s not just advising on legal issues – in-house functions can play a leading role in ensuring companies continue to follow the ethical path.’
Richard Price, group general counsel, Anglo American Continue reading “The Last Word: The clients’ view”

‘Not just a generic consultancy’: BCLP launches in-house innovation and technology arm

‘Not just a generic consultancy’:  BCLP launches in-house innovation and technology arm

Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner (BCLP) has continued its spate of innovation launches, combining parts of its transatlantic innovation teams to create an in-house consultancy, Cantilever.

Cantilever will aim to provide an operational and technology sounding board for clients, while also offering practical technology solutions across areas including contract, matter and litigation management. Continue reading “‘Not just a generic consultancy’: BCLP launches in-house innovation and technology arm”